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Everybody has the same right to get married
by Larry Wilson
May 15, 2012 | 672 views | 0 0 comments | 2 2 recommendations | email to a friend | print
President Obama recently stated that he favors marriage between same-sex partners. He made that announcement the day after North Carolina voters had voted in favor of banning such unions. Political pundits say the president made his statement only after Vice President Joe Biden had also said that he favored same-sex marriages. Politics is definitely at play in this situation, but the fact remains that same-sex marriages are in the political spotlight this election season, like it or not.

Despite all the political wrangling, same-sex couples have a myriad of unfair societal wrongs thrown their way through no fault of their own. If one of them becomes hospitalized in critical condition, the other member of the couple is not able to make life and death decisions on behalf of the ill member since there is no legal tie between them.

Because they are not a legal couple by marriage, health insurance is not afforded both members of the couple, which adds another costly burden to what otherwise would be a married couple.

The word “marriage” gets into the realm of religion and here, too, many recognized religions find same-sex marriage a sin and totally against their tenets. Even though many of the recognized major religions seek to ease life’s burdens on the downtrodden of our world, they are willing to grant even the slightest compassion towards same-sex couples.

Some argue that same-sex marriage, if legally allowed, would tear down the established custom of marriage between heterosexual couples. This despite the fact that heterosexual marriages fail more than 50 percent of the time without any influence from same-sex persons.

I know of a same-sex couple who have been together for more than 50 years. Had they been able to marry they would have celebrated their golden wedding anniversary, but because of the ban on that institution for this couple they cannot officially mark this milestone.

They both have been gainfully employed for their entire adult lives in the same career field. When and if one of them were to die, the other would not receive any survivor benefits from the other’s estate due to society’s ban on same-sex marriage. This is unfair inasmuch as they have been, for all intents and purposes, married for half a century. Legally, they cannot even call this a common law marriage.

Marriage presumes that there is a love between the two partners who are joined in that marriage. Is it too far-fetched to believe that same-sex couples are any less in love with one another when they seek to have a marriage that society recognizes?

There is a growing number of our United States that do currently recognize same sex marriages. To assuage the misgivings of various religions, civil unions are another name given to same sex-marriages. The effect is still the same in that the legal wrongs on these couples will finally be corrected.

I believe that the North Carolina vote banning same-sex marriages will be shot down as unconstitutional when this vote is forced to undergo judicial review, and I’m sure that it will receive this type of scrutiny.

We as a society have for centuries recognized that there are two sexes, but even nature has shown us that there are more sexes in the world. I don’t know any homosexual person who has set out to live that lifestyle. They just are and society needs to get a hold of itself and realize this fact and let these people live their lives, just as all of us want to live ours by having the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness as is stated in the Constitution.

We need also to applaud President Obama for having the courage to recognize that fact.

Larry Wilson is a 50-year resident of Sparks and a retired elementary school teacher. He can be contacted at
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